Kero Kero Bonito have exploded onto the music scene in the past few years, releasing their style of futuristic electro-pop and witty, enjoyable lyrics have enticed a huge cult following across the UK. Now with three albums under their belt, the band fronted by Sarah Midori Perry have begun a tour of the UK and stopped off in dreary, cloudy Manchester to bring colour to the gloomy skies.
It was quite fitting that the set would take place at the newly opened Now Wave music venue, YES; more fittingly in their stylish Pink Room (you guessed it, a room entirely coloured in pink). The evening was opened with a small surprise. Tim Koh, bassist of LA-based band Ariel Pink performed a set of his own material just a month after becoming heavily ill. Not knowing what to expect, Koh performed a set increasingly dependant on backtracks played through his laptop whilst looping guitar and vocals to create this almost atmospheric version of Ariel Pinks sound. There were moments where he placed himself down into a large pink bean bag, making it much easier for him to reach his equipment but also give off a very relaxed, psychedelic appearance with his aztec patterned cardigan and long dark hair.
Kero Kero Bonito is known for her exquisite and extremely fun live shows. She entices the crowd right from the beginning launching into ‘Outside’, the opening track from her 3rd record ‘Time ‘n’ Place’. A rocky number which is a complete polar opposite to following tracks ‘Lipslap’ and ‘Flamingo’. ‘Lipslap’ truly sent the crowd into a craze. It’s energetic energy and dance like power forced the adoring fans to chant the lyrics and dance to the beat. Everyone knew the lyrics and produced a very memorable moment within the first two songs. ‘Flamingo’ was exactly what you’d expect. Hilarity and brilliance at its very best, Perry with her trusty flamingo held high above her head dancing on stage put a smile on everyone in the room. It was a risky move playing two of your biggest songs within the first 15 minutes of your show but it fully enticed the crowd in a clever manner.
The band’s new album takes a completely different direction switching out the futuristic pop sounds with fiery guitars in a fast-paced dream-pop sound. ‘Time Today’ is already a fan favourite. One of the first singles to be released from ‘Time ‘n’ Space’, it’s a jumpy and catchy number which embodies their new record in a very dreamy way. The new direction KKB seem to be heading towards has made their music much more accessible. Their previous two records with the futuristic pop vibes are difficult to truly appreciate, yet with this change of sound, KKB have opened themselves up to a new audience making their music more accessible. Their live shows are no different. It’s just fun.
Monumental amounts of energy and happy faces fill the room as KKB fire into ‘Break’. Sarah Perry continues to get the crowd going with this catchy addition to the bands set. ‘Pocket Crocodile’ with Sarah swapping out the beloved Flamingo for her cuddly crocodile as she bounces around the stage during the barely two-minute long song. The new tracks from her latest record are yet again proving to be crowd pleasers. ‘Flyaway’ and single ‘Picture This’ are met with a great reception considering the band’s drastic change in sound.
The final track of the night is the fan favourite ‘Trampoline’ which send the crowd into a crazed flurry. After KKB left the stage for the encore that featured ‘Trampoline’ the crowd begins to chant the name of the song and band in anticipation of the performance. The eruption of noise and screams for the returning members was unprecedented. Sarah & co. launch straight into the song after thanking everyone for attending the night, and fans begin to fling themselves around the Pink Room.
A wholesome performance of electrical energy, KKB proved that they are one of the most impressive live acts in the UK music scene.